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Avatar universal

need therapy but terrified to leave the house. what should i do?

I am in my mid 30's & & absolutely cannot go very far from my doorstep without suffering severe panic that often induces migraines & has led to me passing out twice. I realize I need professional help badly but I don't know what to do at all. how can I get help if I feel like I'm going to have a heart attack when I step outside?

I have dealt with this since I was about 15, along with depression. & i have isolated myself from people out of fear. but not nearly to the severity it is at now. I am getting worse & really need help.

thanks for reading.
3 Responses
973741 tn?1342342773
Agoraphobia is a subcategory of general anxiety disorder.  It's when the fear of leaving is intense and is what doctors refer to when someone is housebound due to anxiety.  And I'm very sorry you suffer this.  

I think when your wife calls, and I'm so glad she is helpful and supportive, that she needs to express your level of fear and anxiety and that just getting you there is a challenge.  They may have suggestions or at least be sensitive to what you go through to make it to an appointment.  

That's the thing, once you get into therapy and medication ---  you will most likely begin to see a difference.  We all have some anxiety from time to time but it sounds like you are hardly living life at all due to your level of anxiety and I'm so sorry about that.  If you can get through this initial part---  there is a normal life (well, as normal as any of us are) waiting for you.  

Check out that link I provided with pointers on the doctors appointment.  Your wife going with you will be helpful!  Medication is most likely going to be essential.  And CBT and exposure therapy are probably going to come in play.  when we have panic, doctors often want us to face it to see that what we fear ultimately can not REALLY harm us.  It's part of the process of working through the anxiety and knowing that we have the power, the thing we fear doesn't.  

And you will know that just from making and keeping these appointments.  

Stay in touch and let us know how it goes.  And I'll help in any way I can!  good luck
973741 tn?1342342773
Hi there.  Oh, that is so hard.  I feel for you.  You know help is out there but can't get there for the help!  Have you had any psychiatric medical care in the past?  Do you have a or therapist you've worked with?  Even if you haven't, I encourage you to call an office that you've identified as one you would like to receive help from and talk to them about the situation.  Being homebound when you have agoraphobia is an issue that they know about.  They may offer you help.  They may have ideas for you locally.  It also can help to have a family member take charge---  make the appointment and help you get there.  I know that panic can take over and fight or flight responses can happen---  panic attacks are terrible. But, the important thing to remember about panic is it does NOT truly harm you.  It feels really bad for the moments that it is happening----  but you are okay after.  So, you have to really kind of think of it this way so it doesn't have so much power over you.  Doctors will do exposure therapy to help people see that sometimes.  So, start by reminding yourself of this through self talk.  

There is help out there. You just have to get there.  So, call some offices or a doctor that you want to see and see what their suggestion is to help you get to the office through your anxiety.  You could look for online help as well which is not a replacement for true medical care.  You may need medication and therapy combined.  but you can do it!  

Here is something from the Mayo clinic specifically written for those that suffer agoraphobia such as yourself to help prepare them prior to seeing a care provider that can help them:
http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/agoraphobia/basics/preparing-for-your-appointment/CON-20029996

I really wish you well and please stay in touch, okay?  good luck

Avatar universal
thanks for the advice. its worse than agoraphobia . I basically can't door think about anything without thinking of 10 different horrible possibilities. it manifests itself as obsessive compulsive disorder, isolation & very vivid visualization. scary. I guess its general anxiety disorder.

i tried therapy about  2 years ago. back when things weren't as bad as they are now. plus I was on a few medications for anxiety which helped me get there. I'm having my wife set up an appointment for me & I'm just going to force myself to go down there to a new doctor & new therapist. I quit my last one because he seemed to want to focus exclusively on the idea that it was something from my childhood. & you can Imagine what riding in a car does to me.

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Arlington, VA
370181 tn?1595629445
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